Setting up an Environment


Creating environments using Anaconda is recommended due to the ability to create more than one environment. It is also recommended because you can keep dependencies separate from one another that might conflict if you had them all in your root environment. For example, if you had all the dependencies for a Pandas environment and all the dependencies for a Cartopy environment in your root environment, there might be conflicts between channels and packages. So Anaconda allows you to create multiple environments to avoid these issues.

To download and install Anaconda.

While Anaconda is downloading, it will ask if you want to set a path to it, or let Anaconda set a default path. After choosing, Anaconda should finish downloading. After it is done, exit the terminal and open a new one to make sure the environment path is set. If conda command is not found, there is help on running conda and fixing the environment path, found here:

Setting a Channel

Anaconda has a cloud that stores many of its packages. It is recommended, at times, to use the conda-forge channel instead. Conda-Forge is a community led collection of packages, and typically contains the most recent versions of the packages required for ACT. Having packages in an environment, within the same channel, helps avoid conflict issues. To add conda-forge as the priority channel, simply do:

conda config --add channels conda-forge

You can also just flag the channel when conda install packages such as:

conda install -c conda-forge numpy

More on managing channels can be found here:

Creating an Environment

There are a few ways to create a conda environment for using ACT or other packages. One way is to use the environment file, found here:

To create an environment using this file, use the command:

conda env create -f environment.yml

This will then create an environment called act_env that can be activated by:

source activate act_env

or deactivated after use:

source deactivate act_env

Once the environment is created and activated, you can install more packages into the environment by simply conda installing them. An example of this is, if you want Jupyter Notebook to run in that enviroment with those packages, do this step while the environment is activate:

conda install -c conda-forge jupyter notebook

Another way to create a conda environment is by doing it from scratch using the conda create command. An example of this:

conda create -n act_env -c conda-forge python=3.7 numpy pandas astral
scipy matplotlib dask xarray

After activating the environment with:

source activate act_env

Go into the ACT directory and run:

python install

or if in development mode:

pip install -e .

This will also create an environment called act_env that can be activated the same way, as mentioned above with the environment.yml file. To then run your coding editor within the environment, run in the command line:





jupyter notebook

or even:


depending on what you installed in your environment and want to use for coding.

More Information

For more an conda and help with conda: